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Enjoying Wine and Beer in the Augusta GA area

Bousquet Cab, Grilled Ribs & Chopped Pork Add Zip To Driveway Party

Domaine Bousquet Virgen Organic Cabernet Sauvignon 2019, Argentina

Cost: $12-14

We had another driveway dinner party in our neighborhood this week and we upped the game a little.

I dragged out my grill that’s built into a trailer and parked it at the end of the driveway so anyone who wanted to use it, could do so. We just had to follow social distancing guidelines. Our meats or veggies could all be on the grill at the same time, but only one cook was allowed at the grill at a time.

We all had fun. Ben cooked thick marinated pork chops, I did a pork shoulder and a rack of ribs and Hannah (Ben and Day’s nanny) cooked salmon patties. Phillip and Laurie and their children had Chick Fil-A and Walt and Mary Kate, as well as Mary Kate’s parents, had pizza. Mary Kate’s father even brought his guitar and sang some Irish tunes.

I think next week is going to be a birthday party and the week after that we’re all going to be cooking leg quarters on the grill.

These are getting to be so much fun we might have to continue them even after things get back to whatever normal will be post-COVID-19.


We had two wines in our driveway, Domaine Bousquet Virgen Organic Cabernet Sauvignon and a Turley zinfandel from the Whitney Tennessee vineyard. Both wines were very nice, but there is no way to compare them so I won’t.

The Bousquet cab is well balanced, made from organic fruit and no sulfites added. It is loaded with rich fruit flavors such as raspberry and blackcurrent. It is not a lush, over-the-top wine, but drier and more restrained. It is a very nice food wine. The red blend, made of 35 percent Malbec, 35 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and 30 percent Cabernet Franc, is even better. And $13 is an amazing price for such a good wine.


The Turley zinfandel was spectacular. We have never had a wine from them that we didn’t love. The Whitney Tennessee vineyard is named after one of owner Larry Turley’s four daughters. The winery bought the small, pre-Prohibition vineyard in 2009 and has been repairing the soils through organic methods.

Located just off Alexander Valley Road in Sonoma, the vines started producing high quality grapes in 2015 and have kept getting better. The vineyard has small amounts of Petite Syrah and Carignane vines scattered throughout.

The wine is inky dark in the glass with pleasant cherry and herb aromas. This is a rich, full-bodied wine full of ripe fruit flavors such as raspberry and blueberry. It was great with the ribs and pulled pork, and I think it will get even better with some age.

Winery: The Bousquet family made wine in southern France, in the city of Carcassonne, for four generations before Jean Bousquet decided he wanted to try producing wine in Argentina.

He fell in love with the land after a 1990 vacation in Argentina.

After selling his vineyards in the 1990s Bousquet moved to Argentina with his daughter Anne and her husband Labid Al Ameri. They looked for the best locations and focused on Mendoza, the largest wine region in Argentina.

What surprised everyone is where in Mendoza they settled.

Bousquet bought about 270 acres (since expanded to 600 acres) in the Gualtallary valley in Tupungato, Mendoza in 1997. With cool nights and a near constant breeze, the vineyard is located in a region with the ideal conditions to produce ripe grapes and extraordinary wines.

No one had ever planted grapevines there before because they thought it would be too cold in the foothills of the Andes Mountains. In the Gualtallary Valley altitudes range up to 5,249 feet.

“The nature is so imposing,” said Anne Bousquet. “There is nothing between you and the Andes. It is pure. You don’t want to be the first to spoil this pristine land. You don’t want to pollute that.”

In 2011 founder Jean Bousquet sold the winery to his daughter Anne and her husband. They recruited winemaker Paul Hobbs to consult through 2015, with a special focus on new approaches to pruning and harvesting of grapes at different levels of maturity to produce even better balanced wines.

Adopting the French philosophy, the team blends parcels for greater complexity and consistency, even in their single vineyard wines, rather than individually bottling micro-parcels.

The Virgen wines include cabernet sauvignon, malbec and a red blend. Domaine Bousquet produces a chardonnay, pinot grigio, sauvignon blanc, rosé, cabernet sauvignon, malbec and merlot. They also do a chardonnay/torrontes blend. The winery also has a reserve line, Gaia red and white blends, Gran Bousquet (select grapes from the home vineyard) and Ameri, a blend of malbec, cabernet sauvignon, syrah and merlot.

We had ribs and chopped pork with cut veggies and three kinds of sauce: Abram’s, Sweet Baby Ray and Mumbo.





If you have questions about wine you can email Dennis Sodomka at dennis@bottlereport.com

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